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Fashion Stores

Mrs. Huizenga (Roncesvalles)

Posted by Dayna Winter / Posted on November 30, 2010

Mrs HuizengaMrs. Huizenga, a 5-year-old Roncesvalles vintage shop, birthed a wee baby sister in the blossoming heart of the Junction this fall. So it's not actually that far from the original location (both are walkable from Dundas West station), nor does it really offer anything new, but by virtue of the neighbourhood's up-and-coming-ness and a new breed of clientele, the shop's second location is already developing a personality of her own.

UPDATE: This shop has closed. Mrs. Huizenga can now be found at the foot of Roncesvalles.

Owner Catherine Huizenga has always been drawn to the Junction. "It reminds me of Parkdale in the 80s," she tells me. "It has this Wild West vibe."As former owner of The Swallows restaurant, she once had a desire to open a new eatery in the Junction, but the area had been dry since 1904 (prohibition stuck until 1997). Huizenga eventually left the food business for her adoration of all things previously-loved, but one culinary hold-out still remains - she continues to carry Mado's Hot Pepper sauce (if only to guarantee her own personal supply). I warn you, once you try it, you will never again be able to eat eggs without it.

Mrs. HuizengaAside from a few out-of-place condiments and handmade soaps, the rest of the shop is dedicated to goodies from the past. Every inch of the space is packed. But, perhaps because I myself am bordering on becoming a perfect candidate for Hoarders, I don't really find it that cluttered. Huizenga wields her merchandising prowess to create little "stories" with the product. My sense of discovery is heightened. Despite the volume, the store is still quite shopable.

Mrs. HuizengaMrs. HuizengaDigging through the vintage sunglasses, trinkets, hats, small kitchen appliances, and faded photos, I unearth some gems. Making my wish-list are pumpkin-coloured cut-out Maryjanes, a milkshake mixer, huge cards of vintage buttons, a gold frame purse, an illustrated copy of a Lassie children's book, and a miniature figurine of the RCA mascot. There's really quite an eclectic mix. Bar glassware, lacy negligee, and vintage board games join the trash-to-treasure line-up.

Mrs. HuizengaMrs. HuizengaWhile the gentrification of the Junction may not be everyone's idea of a good thing, Huizenga has embraced the character of the neighbourhood's pre-"revitalization" days. Her new baby is flourishing along with other shiny new shops popping up near Keele and Dundas, but delivers a respectful nod to the area's rough-around-the-edges roots. It comes naturally, I suppose, to someone who makes a living out of an appreciation for the past.
Mrs. Huizenga
Photos by Dennis Marciniak.

Discussion

8 Comments

bb / November 30, 2010 at 10:07 am
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Mrs. Huizenga (Roncey) is absolutely lovely but incredibly overpriced. This summer, Catherine was selling a Joe Fresh dress (which i own) for the SAME PRICE used as I bought it new.
Aldrin / November 30, 2010 at 10:48 am
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Thanks for the tip. The one on Roncey is so cozy! Now, I have to pay this one a visit this weekend.
Shirley replying to a comment from bb / November 30, 2010 at 11:25 am
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bb: Directly across the street from this location is a vintage/antiques shop run by a lovely older couple. Selection and prices are amazing. I just recently scored two walnut end tables for $25 each.
dvc / November 30, 2010 at 12:10 pm
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Great Location to cash in on the thousands of new condo owners who will be residing next door.
brian / November 30, 2010 at 01:13 pm
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another shop with old shoes? just kidding!
better luck than the urban clothing store that was present previously
Silly replying to a comment from Shirley / November 30, 2010 at 03:18 pm
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I bought a stunning wool area rug from that shop across the road. Barely used and got him down to $150. He delivered it straight to my place on the spot (and gave me a lift home at the same time!)

I looked the serial number on the rug up online when I got home and the piece was worth $3000 new. STEAL!
Crimson Cass / December 1, 2010 at 10:28 am
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That store is magic, every time I go in I find something I have to buy. And the Junction shop's prices are reasonable.
EL / December 5, 2010 at 12:26 pm
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I love this store! Pass by frequently and every visit I find something I love. :) Best vintage store in the city!

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